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Stop Overthinking Computersby@rafaelandrealves
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Stop Overthinking Computers

by Rafael CordeiroMarch 25th, 2019
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As a computer science student, more often than not I find myself helping friends to choose the right computer for their day to day needs. Moreover, that same question always begins with: <strong><em>“How can I understand computers in 5 minutes?”</em></strong>

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How to choose the right PC for you

As a computer science student, more often than not I find myself helping friends to choose the right computer for their day to day needs. Moreover, that same question always begins with: “How can I understand computers in 5 minutes?”

So, let’s start our journey by learning computers!

Firstly, let’s just go over the fundamental components of a computer:

  • CPU (Central Processing Unit), a simple explanation is that it corresponds to the “Brain” of your computer, it is the component of your computer that gives a set of instructions to the rest of the parts of your computer. Usually done by companies like Intel or AMD, you tend to need a good CPU in order to have a very fast computer, for deploying faster instructions, and in a much bigger quantity.

  • Graphics Card, a component that manages the output quality of the images you see on the screen. They tend to be very important in Gaming or Photography, both needing really high-quality pictures or high speed to generate them.

  • HDD or SSD, component that has the function of Data Storage, there are two main ones, HDD- slow, cheap but effective and SSD- fast, costly and very very effective. This type of storage is most commonly known as the one that “Doesn’t go away when you turn off the PC” which is different than RAM, that we will shortly talk about next. However, either SSD or HDD serves to store your applications and personal files.

from GamingScan page

  • RAM, a volatile memory that only saves data while the computer is working and it is used by the central processing unit (CPU) when a computer is running to store information that it needs to be used very quickly, but it does not store any information permanently.

But, knowing all this, HOW do I pick a PC for me??

Putting it all together:

The short answer is that every PC is perfect if it’s constructed for you! My advice is if you need a very fast PC, pick a PC with a good CPU and RAM, maybe for CPU an Intel i5 or i7, and for RAM, at least bigger than 4 GB. In addition, if you have the budget I would advise to pick SSD, because they are substantially faster, but only if you don’t need a lot of storage space.

If what you really need is Storage, invest in HDD, even though it is slower, you will find the best price for bigger storage amounts. However, if you’re into photography, it’s a must to have the best Graphics Card possible, maybe an NVIDIA GTX.

Lastly, if you’re a gamer, you will need the best of the above, because games nowadays require a lot from you’re PC.

Now you have the capability to choose the perfect PC for you, so go out there and find the Computer of your dreams. Just remember one thing:

It’s hardware that makes a machine fast. It’s software that makes a fast machine slow.

Craig Bruce

This meaning that a good managing of your PC is one of the best solutions for a perfect PC.